Marketing results for ambitious businesses

Dirty Dozen Races: a challenger brand determined to win

Dirty Dozen Races is a challenger brand in the booming but highly competitive obstacle race category. 

Dirty Dozen Poster 2014Co-founder Doug Spence contracted Mick Dickinson at BuzzedUp with a brief to power up online marketing for ten weeks in advance of a new season of races. The challenge was to put in place a solid comms strategy across email, blog, Twitter and Facebook to create excitement about the upcoming race season, build loyalty amongst a niche sport community and sell tickets to new participants.

The work involved creating new content, managing paid advertising on Facebook, some very intense social media account management, and the creation and management of several online competitions. We also sourced and contracted new brand partners for co-promotions.


  • Newsletter template. Dirty Dozen had been using an inflexible method for producing newsletters that incurred extra cost each time new email comms were needed. Our solution was an editable newsletter template including predictable content areas mapped against topics from a content schedule.
  • Content. We produced a range of features including race interviews, product reviews and category news. Newsletters were frequent, short and punchy, linking to longer items hosted on the Dirty Dozen site.
  • Results. In ten weeks we delivered five MailChimp campaigns and grew the list of subscribers by over 400.

“Mick over-delivered on managing our online presence. We have no hesitation in recommending him to others.” Hugo Elliot, co-founder at Dirty Dozen Races

Brand partnerships

  • Using Twitter as a business development tool, we researched, identified and brought on board suitable sport, food and health brands that reflected well on the Dirty Dozen Races principle of healthy competition.
  • We delivered two strong brand partnerships in Alago Heated Gloves and Mountain Bear running shoes (while lining up several others). Each put forward valuable prizes that we used in Facebook competitions (see below).
  • Results. We delivered highly targeted exposure for our brand partners with a very relevant audience. Dirty Dozen Races gained valuable customer discounts and free product for promotions. A win-win all round.


  • We implemented a full suite of services including advertising, contests and day-to-day Facebook management.
  • Advertising. We created several themed campaigns aimed at distinct demographics and interest groups. Each campaign featured up to six alternative creative treatments allowing us to quickly see which worked best and focus attention there. Campaign objectives included sales drive, awareness, app engagement and newsletter sign up.

Advanced re-targeting

We used Facebook’s facility to re-target advertising based email newsletter data. Ads can be served to people ‘similar to’ or ‘friends with’ those in the data set. It’s an under-used method of very tight targeting, affordable and often very successful, as was our case.
  • DDR in training badgeFacebook Custom Apps (YouTube video cascade featuring training tips; two brand partner sweepstake competitions; a product discount coupon redeemable at checkout; and a ‘Book Now’ page). (BuzzedUp’s relationships with a network of publishers meant we were able to publish competitions across a number of Facebook pages, increasing their reach and level of engagement.)
  • Daily Facebook monitoring, posting and customer service meant a very active presence on the platform. We created striking visuals incorporating Dirty Dozen’s own typeface.
  • Results. During our tenure we increased the number of Facebook fans from 5,763 to 7,495 (up 30%), together with average engagement and reach.


  • We inherited a largely dormant Twitter account with no real focus. Twitter updates formed part of the daily workflow as we made friends with influential people, brands and organisations.
  • We pared down the number Dirty Dozen followed from the Twitter-imposed ceiling of 2k to 1,339. This new ratio of followers-to-following allows the brand to continue to grow the community.
  • Results. A great deal of focused Twitter activity delivered a highly relevant following of 1,472 (up 53%).


Our regular regular reports included all the key metrics for Facebook (social and advertising), Twitter and Newsletter.